Simplicity is the aim and the goal. Simplicity is complexity broken down: when each stage or level of a complex pattern or design is itself simple, the whole will become achievable, harmonious and pleasing.
For us simplicity means working with a great textile and making it well, with due diligence, great craftsmanship, tailoring and dressmaking skills. One seam that is well made, evenly stitched and pressed can make a basic thing look a million dollars; a million dollars worth made badly just looks badly made.
When things are created, built up, layer by layer in steps that are complete and well executed the whole, finished product is something of immense complexity, but the building blocks were each, of themselves, simplicity itself.
It’s like anything great – when we look at a cross section or visit St Pauls Cathedral in London, or see the score of a great symphony, we see an awesome complexity; then we realise that every single step was itself carried out singly – one work by one man or one note played by one man; then we add more than one person at the same time, then we can better grasp the concept and the principles of complexity.
The combination of skills, good materials and a plan – the composer, the architect, the conductor, the craftsman, the musician, the notes, the materials, the instruments, the skills, the techniques, the score and the maths. And a touch of brilliance. Don’t forget that. From this we can see how the same principle of simplicity can be broken down into creating furnishings and designing homes.
Simplicity in textiles is an interesting concept- not least because we’re looking for the depths and nuances, the layers that we find in the natural world, the diversity and creativity found within – that does not at first show itself. And much of the work that goes into to creating textile, especially the hand worked ones, is just that – to find and to show diversity and creativity, to gain and to use the skills gained. The results, too are not so very different – whilst one may look calmer and more controlled than another, the reality is that there is deep complexity masking as simplicity everywhere you look.